235445 Expanding access to care: It takes more than health insurance

Monday, October 31, 2011: 9:10 AM

Peter C. Olden, PhD, MHA , Graduate Health Administration Program, University of Scranton, Scranton, PA
Health care can help create healthy communities and promote healthy minds and bodies. However, this can only happen if people have access to the health care. In the United States, millions of people lack access to health care, which limits the country's ability to create healthy communities and promote healthy minds and bodies. The Patient Care and Affordable Care Act in 2010 raised hopes that most Americans will eventually have financial access to care. Yet, more than health insurance is needed to assure access to health care. There are powerful non-financial barriers to care such as language, culture, transportation, time, and availability of providers. Changes in society and the health care system have made these barriers more common, and they must be removed to fully create healthy communities, minds, and bodies. Health care leaders and managers in some communities have already implemented solutions to overcome these barriers, and new solutions are emerging. What can be learned from them? This presentation will define access to care and explain what is required to assure access. Then it will identify barriers to access. Finally, it will report practical approaches to overcome the barriers, expand access to care, and thereby help create healthy communities, minds, and bodies.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Diversity and culture
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
1. Broadly define 'access to care'. 2. Analyze how access to care helps create healthy communities and promote healthy minds and bodies. 3. Describe five dimensions of access to care. 4. Identify barriers that reduce access to care. 5. Explain practical methods for overcoming barriers to expand access.

Keywords: Access to Care, Management

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I studied access to care while earning my MHA and PhD degrees. I was a hospital executive for 14 years and had to improve access to care at my hospital. I have taught access to care in college courses for more than 15 years. Some of my research has included access to care.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

See more of: Access to Care I
See more of: Health Administration